IT HAS long been known that the period of fetal life is characterized by the synthesis of a distinct type of hemoglobin which is gradually, and finally completely, replaced by another type which is found in the blood of older infants, children, and adults. Differences between fetal and adult hemoglobin were first shown by von Korber1 in 1866 and von Krüger2 in 1887, both of whom demonstrated an increased resistance to alkali denaturation of the hemoglobin derived from fetal red cells. Many subsequent investigations have confirmed these observations, not only in humans, but also in many of the animal species as well.* In addition to differences in response to alkali denaturation, the two types of hemoglobin have been found to differ in oxygen and carbon dioxide affinity,f chemical structure,13 immunological properties ‡ crystalline configuration,16 and electrophoretic mobility.§ Most investigators have indicated that the differences lie in
SCHULMAN I, SMITH CH. FETAL AND ADULT HEMOGLOBINS IN HEMOLYTIC DISEASE OF THE NEWBORN. AMA Am J Dis Child. 1954;87(2):167–178. doi:10.1001/archpedi.1954.02050090155003
Coronavirus Resource Center
Customize your JAMA Network experience by selecting one or more topics from the list below.